Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Magical Stuff

One of the highlights of our vacation was an afternoon spent in Old Town Alexandria. My dad works at Murphy's Irish Pub so we also scored a free lunch while we were at it. We took my nephew along for the trip. In the past, I was always hesitant to take him anywhere (without my sister coming along) because he had such severe allergies (milk, eggs, nuts, etc.) that I worried I would inadvertently send him into anaphylactic shock. Like a cheese doodle might get away from me or something. However, he has now outgrown the egg and dairy allergies so the odds of me snuffing him out by accident have decreased considerably.

We visited the Torpedo Factory (art center) and then walked along the waterfront. It was a beautiful day and even the Potomac was looking particularly picturesque. There was a balloon man out by the docks. Whenever and wherever there is a balloon man to be found, I am always the sucker parent who forks over a couple bucks for a twisty latex flower/dog/wand. Then, invariably, my daughter will scrape her balloon along a tree or the side of a building until it pops.

This particular balloon man was very funny and animated. As he was twisting pink and purple balloons into the shape of a flower, he joked with her and made funny comments. Then he asked her, "What is that?" He leaned forward and tweaked my daughter's nose, pulling out a Dum-Dum sucker in the process. "Look what you had in your nose!" he exclaimed. My daughter just shrugged as if to say, "Yeah, I guess I did!"

I love the way kids can so easily employ a willing suspension of disbelief. She never seemed to doubt that she'd had a lollipop in her nostril. A few minutes later, I heard her telling her cousin, "I had this in my nose." In a few years, she won't believe such things and then Santa will come tumbling down, too. But, perhaps the memory of that simple moment will somehow remain.

What really made my day on that particular excursion was the water glass guy. I had heard of rubbing the rim of a water glass to create a musical tone, but I had never seen it taken to this level. I was mesmerized. P kept asking, "Are we done now? How about now?" I think I could've stayed all afternoon. There were dozens of glasses of varying sizes, each tethered to the table with a series of rubber bands. He played song after song, many of them Christian hymns. His hands flew over the glasses, a stroke here and a stroke there somehow creating one cohesive melody. His talent was its own kind of magic.

3 comments:

Lisa said...

I LOVE the openess of kids to believe in anything. :)

Susie said...

Sounds like a great day--I so want to get back to DC someday now that I'm old enough to take it all in. I was 14 when I was there before and remember a few things (we were there for 4th of July--nuts!)but didn't really have an appreciation for much of the history. Glad you have a great trip and are home safe and sound and (mostly) sane!

greedygrace said...

What a fun day! I want to learn to play the glasses!